Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
October 12th, 2017
Charles and Sara Rippey met in grade school in Wisconsin and were together ever since. They attended the University of Wisconsin and married in 1942 before Charles served in the US Army during World War II.
The couple celebrated their seventy-fifth wedding anniversary last year. Charles was one hundred years old; Sara was ninety-eight and had suffered a stroke. They lived together in their home in Napa, California.
This week, they died together reports AP News.
After wildfires ravaged their community, one of their sons discovered their bodies.
Charles fought through the intense heat and smoke and almost made it to his wife’s side. His son found their remains near each other.
“My father certainly wouldn’t have left her,” he told reporters.
The couple had met in grade school in Wisconsin and been together ever since, celebrating their 75th anniversary last year.
Rippey, 71, said he and his siblings couldn’t imagine how either parent would have navigated life if just one had survived the flames.
“We knew there’s no way they would ever be happy, whoever was the last one. So they went together, and that’s the way it worked,” he said stoically.
In the charred remains of the home, only metal and porcelain survived to testify to the couple’s long life together. There were coffee cups along a low sill; two metal chairs, side-by-side near a patio table; and a porcelain tea set of white and soft washes of blue, some pieces still intact.
A series of wildfires raging across Northern California have destroyed thousands of homes, businesses and other buildings. The wildfires rank among the deadliest in state history, and officials expect the death toll to rise as the scope of destruction becomes clear.
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